Carlton's Thornton cleared of fracture - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Carlton's Thornton cleared of fracture

Justin Chadwick 14/08/2011 02:32:29 PM Comments (0)

Carlton defender Brett Thornton is expected to be fit for Friday night's blockbuster AFL clash with Hawthorn after scans cleared him of any serious damage to his face.

Thornton was taken to a Perth hospital on Saturday after copping an accidental fist from Garrick Ibbotson during Carlton's 30-point win over Fremantle.

A golf ball-sized lump immediately formed under Thornton's left eye after the fourth-quarter marking contest, but scans showed no fracture and the 27-year-old flew home to Melbourne with his teammates on Saturday night.

It is believed the dramatic swelling, which has since subsided, was caused because Ibbotson's fist struck a blood vessel.

Thornton's availability is good news for Carlton, who could also regain key defender Michael Jamison (knee) against the third-placed Hawks, who warmed up for the match with a 165-point mauling of Port Adelaide.

The Blues are in fourth spot, but must win their remaining games against Hawthorn and St Kilda to have a legitimate chance of staying inside the top-four.

Meanwhile, Fremantle coach Mark Harvey has declared key midfielder David Mundy a certain starter for Saturday's must-win clash with North Melbourne at Etihad Stadium.

Mundy, who has missed the past nine weeks due to a serous upper ankle sprain, will be rushed straight back into senior ranks in a bid to keep the Dockers' ever-so-slim finals hopes alive.

In all likelihood, ninth-placed Fremantle will need to win their remaining three games - against the Kangaroos, Collingwood and Bulldogs - in order to qualify for the finals.

Harvey said Mundy's inclusion came at a vital time after watching his team's spiritless performance against Carlton.

"He's been doing a lot of running on the side. That's what gives me confidence, to know that he'll play next week," Harvey said.

Fremantle skipper Matthew Pavlich aggravated a leg injury in Saturday's pre-match warm-up, but Harvey played down the complaint.

Harvey said his team were flattered by the final margin against the Blues, who at one point led by 57 points before the Dockers piled on quick goals late in the match to add respectability to the scoreboard.

And the former Essendon premiership defender sounded a warning to his charges, saying they must get their skills up to scratch or find themselves dropped.

"... Your ability to be able to hit targets or make the right decision, is ultimately why you're an AFL footballer," Harvey said.

"Now if your judgement or your inability to be able to do that is not there, then you're going to compromise the team.

"And quite regularly players will go in and out of sides because of that reason.

"We need quicker players in our team, there's no question.

"I think we've got too many guys in the side at the moment that are playing catch-up with their lack of playing (due to injury), which doesn't help things."

Harvey said he was pleased with the output of returning ruckman Aaron Sandilands, who tallied 15 possessions, 24 hit-outs and two goals in his first outing in seven weeks.

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